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Happy 50th Birthday to Abba's Waterloo

It’s the 50th anniversary of Waterloo so in honour of my love of Abba, I am offering you my top 50 Abba songs. On any given day they could change or move up or down the list depending on my mood. Saying that, my top 10 are pretty solid. I have loved revisiting some favourites.

I was blessed to see Abba at Wembley in 1979 (My mum took me). I went to see Abba World in 2010 in London, I have seen Voyage and have tickets to go again in July.  I have seen Mamma Mia on stage many times but most people who know me know I always say ‘No one sings Abba like Abba’. 

On Friday 5 April, I have also been invited to talk about Abba on local radio to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Waterloo. Thank you for taking the time to look at my choices and thank you Abba for your music.

Photos are Abba World, Abba Voyage and a random photo of me at Euston station seeing an Abba Voyage poster!


1.    Voulez Vous

It’s my favourite as I can dance to it and it makes me feel excited. It makes me remember Wembley in 1979. And its Abba’s take on disco. What’s not to love? 

2.    Waterloo

Where my love affair with Abba started. The opening bars send shivers down my spine and the lyrics are so clever, relating the war of waterloo with your own relationships. It shows the genius of Abba. They actually show the footage of the 1974 European song contest at Voyage so you can pretend you are hearing it for the first time! Did you know that Abba applied in 1973 with Ring Ring but didn’t get accepted to represent Sweden that year? 

3.    Summer Night City

This song feels like an adventure. When Abba World came to London, I chose this song to sing to but don't panic - I am not sharing that video! 

4.    My Love My Life

Abba’s best ballad. The words are so poignant and make me sad. When I had singing lessons, I picked this song to sing. It’s not an easy song! 

5.    Medley – Pick A Bale Of Cotton/On Top Of Old Smoky/Midnight Special

Always loved this song. It’s the upbeat tempo of pick a bale of cotton that gets me. 

6.    Hole In Your Soul

I love the chorus – I love the idea that music fixes everything and you feel the music so much it’s part of your soul. It fills the hole in your soul. And the girls’ harmonies on this are so awesome. I love that it was played at the 79 concert and at Voyage. They must know I love it!. 

7.    As Good As New

You may start to guess that Voulez Vous is my favourite album. This should have been a single. Very classical opening and such a fab track.  I’d love to see it used in strictly. 

8.    If It Wasn’t For The Nights

Another brilliant track with clever lyrics. Thinking about this song today when I have had a lot of bereavement in the last 18 months, makes me think about it in a different way. Keeping yourself busy all the day through helps stop the pain in your heart. 

9.    Slipping Through My Fingers

My mum used to say this song was about me. I was still at school and didn’t get it back then. Now my own children have grown, it makes me cry every time I hear the line ‘What happened to the wonderful adventures? The places I had planned for us to go. Well, some of that we did but most we didn't. And why? I just don't know’.

10.  Money Money Money –I work all day to pay the bills I have to pay. So relatable to dream of a big win. 

11.  Andante Andante. A very sexy song showing the beauty of Frida’s voice. 

12.  Just A Notion. This is my favourite song from the Voyage album. There is something magical about it. Absolutely loved it from first listen. 

13.  Gimme Gimme Gimmie. Always loved it but when the Spanish album came out and I could sing it in Spanish, I loved it even more.  

14.  Mamma Mia. If you had to explain Abba to someone who has never heard of them, I’d pick this track. Love the intro. Love the lyrics. Just love it. 

15.  Take A Chance On Me. I like the way you are saying hey – I am here. Don’t forget that. Absolutely classic video. 

17.  Angeleyes. A great track that is often overlooked. 

18.  Watch Out. Love the energy of this track. 

19.  Honey Honey. The pace of this is similar to Hasta Manana, but I chose this as I like it slightly more. Kudos to the girls wearing those tight outfits. Not sure I would have worn them even when I was 20! 

20.  Happy Hawaii. I remember thinking it was so clever to put new words to a song tune they already had. Makes you want to go on holiday. (and I have never been to Hawaii). 

21.  Rock Me. Gets me dancing and I like it when the boys sing. 

22.  Fernando. I have done this at Karaoke and yes I sounded terrible. But it’s a beautiful song when Abba sing it. 

23.  Ring Ring. Be honest, do you do the actions to it? I know I do! And I do remember the days before social media when you waited for the landline to ring. 

24.  I Do I Do I Do I Do I Do. My sister walked down the aisle to this. While I love the idea of using Abba at a wedding, I was never a fan of Muriel’s Wedding. This is a funny video – did the person filming think it was arty to film behind the reeds? 

25.  So Long. Loving this video – they are enjoying it so much. And the classic cat costumes too!  

26.  Why did it have to be me? I just like this. 

27.  On And On And On. Always loved how Abba thought about their lyrics. I can picture the scene they are describing in my head. It’s a posh party and you are talking politics. ‘I was not exactly waiting for the bus’ shows the humour in the song too. 

28.  Nina Pretty Ballerina. Another hugely influenced by my mum. A few years ago she bought me a sparkly ballerina brooch and called it Nina Pretty Ballerina. I love the fact Nina has a special secret and we don’t know until she is dancing. 

29.  That’s Me. A matter-of-fact song trying to put someone off of dating you. Not many songs like this. 

30.  The Piper. Not sure how many people would have this in their top 50, but it feels magical. Abba really captured something in this song. 

31.  Move On. I am not a fan of the ‘speak a verse’ lyrics, but the words are saying life is great and I love that positive attitude. 

32.  Don’t Shut Me Down. Another from Voyage. I liked this as soon as I heard it so it’s above a lot of classics, including Dancing Queen. Abba’s still got it! 

33.  Dance While The Music Still Goes On. Live in the moment. Don’t think about tomorrow. Appreciate the now. Very clever people have written books about this philosophy, but Abba do it perfectly in a song. 

34.  Name Of The Game. A song of hope. I feel it’s the opposite to Knowing Me Knowing You.I hate game playing in relationships and here are Abba calling it out.

35.  The Way Old Friends Do. Share the silence – gosh that’s rare. But I love how Abba describe a true friendship. 

36.  I’ve Been Waiting For You. The words to this song are just wonderful. These could be wedding vows. 

37.  My Mama Said. Perfect for a teenager trying to find her independence. 

38.  Intermezzo No 1. The only song I chose with no lyrics. But wanna know a secret? When I was young I made up a dance routine to this. This feels classical and really speaks to me. 

39.  Does Your Mother Know? At Wembley in 1979, I ran down the front, and my mum reluctantly followed. We were in front of Benny when they were singing this and I kept shouting his name until he waved at me. His little wave meant the world to me. 

40.  Happy New Year. Always loved this. Lots of respect that they avoided a Christmas song for so long (and I am not a huge fan of Little Things). 

41.  The King Has Lost His Crown. I feel this is not unlike Angeleyes. A warning about an ex. But this is almost cheering the fact he got caught out. 

42.  The Winner Takes It All. The classic. I did always wonder why they were singing about a fence (and sometimes sung it as offence!). Did any of you sing the wrong lyrics to any Abba songs? 

43.  Lovers (Live A Little Longer). Sultry. Sexy. Seductive. And that’s just Frida in this video! 

44.  Knowing me Knowing you. The drama of relationships. Abba are so good at this.

45.  Dancing Queen. I do love this song, but its really overplayed and feel there are many better songs so that is why it is so low in my choice. Also, I am not 17 anymore!

46.  Tiger. Love the energy of this song. 

47.  Super Trouper. I think this would score higher if it was more relatable. Who even knew what a super trouper was before this came out? And did Abba ever play Glasgow? (I don’t know). 

48.  Gonna Sing You My Love Song. Reminds me of my mum playing the 8-track in the Volvo when we were going on holiday in the mid 70’s. Lovely memories. 

49.  I Have A Dream. Reminds me of when I saw them and I think this song is beautiful. However I was not a fan of the children (maybe I was jealous) but still not a fan of the children singing it. 

50.  The Day Before You Came. Very clever take on how things were before someone changes your life. 


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